After recording a few early morning feeder birds (FOY bird: Northern Cardinal), we set out to Five Rivers EEC in Delmar for the 30th annual New Year's Day Bird Count. The turnout was strong, with about forty people setting out in two groups to see what could be found. I believe the final count was 29 species, which is slightly low by historical standards. Both Carolina Wren and Red-bellied Woodpecker were observed, as they continue to show their year-round presence in the region. Other notables were Cedar Waxwing, Pileated Woodpecker, Sharp-shinned Hawk, and Hermit Thrush.
Our next stop was the Hudson-Mohawk Bike Path in Niskayuna. The river was completely frozen over and snow covered. The shrubby area to the east of the old train station was very active. A surprise find was a Northern Mockingbird eating some berries. A Brown Creeper was moving around with a group of chickadees, titmice, sparrows and cardinals. A group of Mallards was foraging in some open water along Rosendale Rd.
All told it was a good start to the new year, with 27 species tallied for the day. Remember to bird every bird!